Knock-off charger electrocutes woman

The death of a Sydney woman in April is believed to have been caused by a cheap USB charger which did not meet Australian electronics safety standards.

The knock-off charger in question was purchased from a phone accessory store in southwest Sydney, which has since been forced to remove them from sale. The store owner is now facing a fine of up to $87,500 and may serve up to two years jail time. 

Unapproved chargers vary in appearance with some looking exactly like brand name devices, but when an authorised seller isn’t selling the charger, there’s no guarantee that you’re purchasing a certified device.

An official Apple USB wall charger costs $25, plus shipping, where a charger identical in appearance can be purchased on eBay for $1 with shipping included. With such a saving, it’s easy to see why people would purchase these knock-offs, but few are aware of just how dangerous they can be. Is it really worth the risk?

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